Monday, November 24, 2008

Prep contingent returns from Ignatian Teach-In

Saint Peter's Prep students and staff outside of Fort Benning, Georgia.

Saint Peter’s Prep students and staff returned yesterday from the Ignatian Family Teach-In for Justice, an annual event calling for the closure of the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (formerly the School of the Americas). It is also an opportunity to commemorate the deaths of the Salvadorian Jesuits, their housekeeper and her daughter, who were murdered by SOA-trained soldiers.

The Prep contingent was led by Mr. Erich Sekel, assistant director of campus ministry. He was joined by Ms. Jane Bleasdale, a religion teacher and Prep’s director of faculty formation. Together the pair joined 15 students who spent the two days in prayer, reflection, dialogue, and peaceful protest alongside hundreds of students from other Jesuit high schools and colleges.

“Our students entered the weekend open and enthusiastic,” said Mr. Sekel. “I was impressed by their attentiveness and desire to learn about the various issues discussed. Through their discussions and reflections, they challenged one another to bring the spirit of solidarity and commitment to justice back to Prep.

“For me,” he continued, “it re-affirmed my belief in the mission of Saint Peter’s. It was just a great and proud weekend for me.”

Novices visit Prep for Jesuit Vocations Day

Travis Stoops, n.S.J., speaks to freshmen in the Madonna Chapel.

Two Jesuit novices from Saint Andrew's Hall, the novitiate for the New York, New England and Maryland Provinces, were on hand on November 14 as Prep held its annual Jesuit Vocations Day. The day began with a prayer service for vocations in the Mulry Hall lobby.

Throughout the day, Travis Stoops, n.S.J. and Vinny Marchionni, n.S.J. met with freshman religion classes in the Madonna Chapel. The two talked about their faith, about the process of Jesuit formation, and shared stories that helped the freshmen see parts of their journeys in their own lives.

As part of the larger Jesuit community, Prep recognizes the need for men who feel called to serve the mission of the Society and the Church. Vocations Day is an opportunity to introduce the possibilty of becoming a Jesuit priest or brother to the young men of the Prep community.

"Many times, students don't realize the opportunities the Jesuits offer," said Mr. Ryan Heffernan, Director of Campus Ministry. "Around the world there are ordained Jesuits working as doctors, lawyers, and artists. The Jesuits make it possible to follow both your heart and your dreams."